Last weekend I retraced my footsteps from the moments before the earthquake for the first time since that day. This has only been possible for the last six months or so when the red zone cordon was finally taken down. There are still quite a few fences and shipping containers still up - though times are changing, and some are around new buildings.
Here are some photos I took, to document what it is like now. I couldn't retrace my exact path due to the fences and shipping containers that are still up, but this is fairly close. The phrase that come to mind afterwards was 'there but for the grace of God go I'.
It was nice to see some signs of life returning to this part of High street. This heritage building has been restored to it's original beauty, and the new Strange's building next to it appears to be progressing well.
As I remember the terrible events of that day, my thoughts are with those that lost loved ones, those that were injured and those whose houses and businesses were badly damaged. I don't think anyone comprehended the scale of what had happened, I couldn't. I remember thinking that it would be a lot longer than last time before we were allowed back in the central city, but I was thinking it would be months, not years. I have wanted to do an update on the buildings I showed in this post a week after the September quake ever since then. I've got some updated photos, so once I have the rest, I will do a post with them.
Three years on, I hope that those who are still struggling with insurance issues get some answers and closure soon, so they can move on with their lives.